Plug into life.
Transform your Android phone into a distraction-free device.
Unpluq enables you to focus on the meaningful things in life, by giving you the power to decide when to unplug distracting apps.
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We believe you should control technology, instead of technology controlling you.
unpluq enables you to spend time on the meaningful things in life.
It frees you of distractions smartphones inevitably bring along. It enables you to decide when you want to be free of distraction, or when you want your entire phone’s functionality, by plugging the Unpluq key in or out.
The Unpluq launcher will switch between the Unpluq mode and the Normal mode based on whether the Unpluq key is plugged in or out.
The Unpluq key gives you access to your distracting apps. You can keep it on your keychain or leave it at home - your choice.
By detaching the Unpluq key from your phone, the launcher switches to Unpluq mode. In Unpluq mode, only apps of your choice will be available and notifications of all other apps will be blocked. Yet when you make the conscious decision to plug the Unpluq key back in, you will have the functionality of your entire phone, and your missed notifications will be shown to you.
We chose to make a combination of hardware and software because we think the current software solutions don’t offer enough to help you regain control over your smartphone.
With the addition of a physical key we give you the option to create the barrier to distraction yourself: you can decide where to store the Unpluq key when you want to focus. Furthermore, you have to make a conscious decision to physically plug it in and enter the room of distraction.
"I went from using my phone for 3 hours per day to using it for 30 minutes per day."
"There were moments where I wanted to do something on my phone, but Unpluq made me realise it could wait."
"Unpluq helped me in reducing my time playing distracting games a lot."
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Minimalist phone and smartphone in one
Unpluq is the combination of buying a minimalist/dumb phone, combined with all the useful functionality your smartphone has to offer. No need to buy a minimalist phone, just transform your phone into one! You decide when you use all functionality of your phone, or when you transform it into a useful, distraction-free device.
At Unpluq, we believe you should control technology, instead of technology controlling you.
We want you to enjoy life more calmly, joyfully and peacefully. We want you to have more time to focus on what’s meaningful to you.
At Unpluq we design products that deliver benefit to the customer with privacy in mind, we are not storing any of your data - you are not the product.
Who are we?
We are a team of engineers and creatives working from Delft, The Netherlands.
Using our smartphone less is something we strive for, but also struggle with. We see this problem all around us.
By getting rid of digital distractions, we want to enable people to focus on the important things in life.
Julian already did a successful Kickstarter campaign, the Somnox sleep robot.
Ven set up a successful startup, Inkless, for printing without the need for actual ink.
Physical barrier to distraction
You decide which apps to put into Unpluq mode
You decide when to put your phone into Unpluq mode
Notifications of distracting apps are blocked when in Unpluq mode, only to be shown when you plug the Unpluq key back in
Restrict app usage by setting daily time restrictions
Widgets available in the Unpluq launcher
Greyscale when in Unpluq mode
Six favourite apps always quickly at hand
Usage time per app is shown below each app
Search for apps with the search bar
The Unpluq key is made from recycled plastic
We do not store any of your data - we value your privacy
Currently, Unpluq only works on Android phones with USB C ports.
Impact of Smartphones on society
“The presence of a smartphone, even when off, can reduce cognitive capacity by taxing the attentional resources that reside at the core of both working memory capacity and fluid intelligence”
Source: Ward, Duke, Gneezy, and Bos, 2017. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study9)
Almost 90% of 290 undergraduates reported feeling "phantom vibrations," which were experienced an average of once every two weeks
Source: Drouin, Kaiser, and Miller, 2012. Computers in Human Behavior
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study12)
Attention span from 12 to 8 seconds
“Researchers in Canada surveyed 2,000 participants and studied the brain activity of 112 others using electroencephalograms (EEGs). Microsoft found that since the year 2000 (or about when the mobile revolution began) the average attention span dropped from 12 seconds to eight seconds.”
Source: Microsoft research
A systematic review and meta-analysis (of 20 studies) showed strong, consistent evidence of an association between bedtime access to or use of devices and reduced sleep quantity and quality, as well as increased daytime sleepiness
Source: Carter, Rees, and Hale, 2016. Journal of the American Medical Association: Pediatrics
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study_74)
Electronic device use is weakly correlated with teen depression and suicide, and social media use is weakly correlated with depressive symptoms, especially for girls
Source: Twenge - citing the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey administered by the CDC, 2017.
Even the mere presence of smartphone can disrupt the connection between two people, having negative effects on closeness, connection, and conversation quality
Source: Przybyliski and Weinstein, 2013. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships
Digital communications miss out on advantages of in-person conversation, including body language, voice, tone, and silences
Source: Turkle, 2015. Reclaiming Conversation
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study_54)
78% of teens check their devices at least hourly, and 50% report feeling “addicted” to their phones; meanwhile, 69% of parents check their devices at least hourly, and 27% of parents feel "addicted"
Source: Lake Research Partners, 2016. Common Sense Media
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study_15)
"Teenagers who spend 5 hours a day on electronic devices are 71% more likely to have suicide risk factors than those with 1 hours use."
"67% of surveyed teachers observed students being negatively distracted by mobile devices."
Big Tech Positions
Chamath Palihapitiya, former VP of user growth at Facebook, has said that: “I can control my decision, which is that I don’t use that sh%t. I can control my kids’ decisions, which is that they’re not allowed to use that sh%t... The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works.”
Source: Hern, 2018. The Guardian
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study76)
Many modern Silicon Valley parents strongly restrict technology use at home, and some of the area’s top schools minimize tech in the classroom. In the words of one 44-year-old parent who used to work at Google, "We know at some point they will need to get their own phones, but we are prolonging it as long as possible."
Source: Weller, 2018. Business Insider
Via: Ledger of Harms (https://ledger.humanetech.com/#study86)
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